Skoda Scala

skoda scala review 2024 01
skoda scala review 2024 01

It wasn't Skoda who first hit on the idea of putting a bigger hatchback body onto an existing supermini model platform, in order to deliver to market an equally spacious but better value car than the average family five-door. Technically at least, it’s the idea that the modern Dacia brand is founded on.

But it’s what the Skoda Scala has been up to since it first came along in 2019; it's likewise what both the Skoda Rapid and Rapid Spaceback before it tried; and it's what the car continues to do now that it's had its major mid-life facelift for 2024.

The Scala fits into the Skoda range quite well, since the longer-lived Octavia hatchback has become a much bigger and pricier prospect, leaving plenty of room for something slotted in between that and the smaller Fabia supermini to flourish within.


It is, at heart, the same kind of spacious, functional, practically featured and good-value car that we're so used to seeing from this ambitious Czech brand; but, in this instance, Skoda would like to add something along the lines of ‘upmarket sophistication’ to the Scala's armoury too.

As much is evident from looking at the Scala, whose design borrows cues from the premium European manufacturers both inside and out, and whose two-box, C-segment dimensions place it right in the cross-hairs of the traditionally minded European buyer. With the Skoda Octavia accounting for the bulk of Skoda’s sales and its growing range of crossovers catching up, Skoda has never built a car that so directly rivals the likes of Ford’s Ford Focus, the Vauxhall Astra, and even its Volkswagen Golf cousin.

Of course, moving upmarket is never as simple as fitting an all-glass rear window and using Porsche-style model badging on the bootlid. The Scala need not handle like the best car in this class, but it must ride with a degree of panache that the Rapid never managed. Likewise, nobody is expecting Mercedes levels of refinement - but success in this class now certainly demands fairly sophisticated long-distance road manners, and a certain level of richness and digital technology within the cabin.

Time, then, to find out if that facelift has added any of the above - and precisely what difference it may make.

The Scala range at a glance

Skoda is good at keeping things simple, so there are only three trim levels to choose from for the Scala: SE, SE-L and the ever-so-slightly-sporty Monte Carlo.

The 1.0-litre three-cylinder motors will likely be the most popular among Scala customers, one of which has been updated; but there's a 1.5-litre four-cylinder for those who want better performance, which is the engine elected to test.